Shortly after the bombing of Pearl Harbor, Cooke, a newly naturalized citizen, set out to see his country as it was undergoing a monumental change. He wanted to "see what the war had done to people, to the towns I might go through, to some jobs and crops, to stretches of landscape I loved and had seen at peace; and to let significance fall where it might." Working throughout the war, Cooke finished the manuscript as the atomic bomb was being dropped on Hiroshima. His publisher at the time thought there would be little interest in books on the war, and so it was stuffed in a closet for almost sixty years, until shortly before Cooke's death. Meanwhile, he had become one of the most widely read chroniclers of America, and his record of a lost country are captivating.--From publisher description.